Travel data problems
This is where it starts to get a little technical.
The site is built on a content management system, CMS, using Joomla. Joomla is moving forward and version 3.10.?? is being discontinued. Future developments are for version 4.??
Similarly, PHP 7 is being replaced with PHP 8.
Part of the migration is relatively simple, I have already changed to a new template which works on the new platforms.
However, some of the helper applications, which work within Joomla are not yet ready.
Fabrik is one of those applications, if fact a significant 'Joomla Custom Website Application Builder'.
Fabrik is a very extensive
'... open source application development, form and database management component.
It gives people the power to create custom applications without requiring knowledge of mySQL and PHP, all from within a familiar Joomla administration interface.
Fabrik provides you with all the tools that you need to create applications that range in complexity from simple contact forms to complex applications such as a job application site or bug tracking systems. '
I have used it to create the whole of the travel data section of this website. Including the basics such as lists of countries, regions, and continents. These lists are used to populate lists of countries visited, list of trips, and border crossings.
The Fabrik website clearly states that it does support Joomla 4.
NOTICE: If you are using Fabrik and update to Joomla 3.10, you will need to update to Fabrik 3.10. And, if you are using Fabrik, do not upgrade to Joomla 4, we do not have a supported version ready for release. More information on a release date coming soon. Also, please note that Fabrik 3.10 will not install on any Joomla sites less than 3.8.
There has also been a notice in the forum.
This rases some doubt in the future of Fabrik with respect to Joomla 4. Add this to the retirement of Joomla 3, it seems that the Travel Data section of my website is in jeopardy.
I bought a copy of Chronoforms7 as this seemed the most likely potential replacement.
The first attempt was a multi-page form. This did not work. It was my misunderstanding. I was trying to build a multi FORM or multiple forms, all linked together, in a section that is for one form constructed over multi-pages.
The next attempt was to utilize SP Page Builder for navigation and as the container for the Chronoforms7 lists and forms, but initially just lists.
Support for SP Page Builder told me that the product could not directly access the MSQL database holding the travel data. Whereas Chronoforms7 can access the database. Hence joining them together to see what can be achieved. Starting with a basic navigation page. That works OK with an accordion and buttons. Go to the 'United Nations classifications' tab, and click the blue button, labelled 'Go to the United Nations classifications section'United Nations classifications section'.
Another accordian, with three buttton types in each, Add, List, and Edit. Only List works at the moment. It looks to the database and populates the list. All good so far. Each list is produced as an output. However, although they are simple lists, they are interrelated, each a subset of the previous. I can get A and B to interact, but not A and B and then C. So I can't create them into a single three tier interrelated list. I have discussed this with ChromeForm7 support, and it seems that you have to start writing code.
Another problem is that each page is created as a general article which showes up on the sites article list. This will just confuse, am I reading an article or some random data?!
All this before even looking into the forms for Add or Edit.
OK, I can create list, but not manipulate it yet, and these lists are not even end product lists.
All in all, no clear way forward.
This could be the end of the website.
13th September 2023 - The rescue
However, a potential way forward has been found. I have droped all of the attempts to have travel data on this site. The software related to this has been forcibly removed, not just by disabling or uninstalling, but additioanlly removing references to those sofware pacages from the directories and the database tables. So few, if any of the links above, in this atricle will work anymore.
This website is now deviod of that information.
This action has also allowed me to migrate from Joomla 3.10 to Joomla 4.3.
There is a future.